BMW Motorrad USA hosted an inaugural invitational rally at their Regional Distribution Center (RDC) adjacent to the Stockton Airport last Friday, October 21st. The facility handles and distributes virtually everything for BMW automobile and motorcycle dealerships (except whole motorcycles) west of the Mississippi. At 250,000 square feet and nearly 50 feet high, it is a breathtakingly huge operation.
The rally participants were dealership personnel, guests and VIP riders invited by the dealerships. I’d like to think that my invitation was solely because I am a powerful, influential member of the motorcycle media, but the truth is it came as a result of an invitation from Gail at Cycle Specialties in Modesto. I’ve covered some events there in the recent past and grown to like those folks, so it was a nice gesture on their part.
Participants were first treated to an excellent BBQ lunch and then a guided tour, complete with explanations of how they track the accuracy, punctuality and recalls of their entire system. Absolutely everything that enters or leaves the doors of the facility is tracked and recorded. My tour guide, Junior, could cite a plethora of essential statistics from memory without blinking.
Once they dazzled everyone with the accuracy and sheer package handling volume of the behemoth warehouse, it was time for the featured entertainment; stunt rider Chris “Teach” McNeil. McNeil performed varying stunts on both a BMW 1000RR and a fully equipped, fully bagged BMW GS. He performed his more radical, tire smoking, frame bending stunts aboard the 1000RR, but personally I enjoyed watching him manhandle and finesse the monstrous GS even more. If you’ve ever thrown a leg over a fully equipped GS with those huge side bags and felt its weight and high center of gravity, then you can really appreciate his talent as a rider. See the slide show and video, because words simply can’t do it justice.
The BMW personnel on hand for the event displayed all the charm and professionalism you’d expect from the representatives of a world class motorcycle and automobile manufacturer. They informed me that they intend to make this an annual event, so all you riders who would like to see this for yourself, start making nice with your local dealer. And just wait ‘til you see what’s in the goody bag!
Until next time, stay tuned and upright,